World Polio Day

Hampton Rotary Club
United States

World Polio Day Date in the current year: October 24, 2017

World Polio Day World Polio Day is observed on October 24. This observance was established by nongovernmental organization Rotary International in order to commemorate the birth of Jonas Salk, the developer of a vaccine against polio.

Poliomyelitis was known since the ancient times, but the first clinical description of the disease was provided only by English physician Michael Underwood in 1789. The virus stroke the developed countries at the end of the 19th century, at the beginning of the 20th century it appeared in the USA and Europe. The disease reached its peak during the 1950s, when it started to shift from infants to children aged from five to nine.

Polio affects the further life of those children who once suffered it. The first efficient attempts to fight the virus were made by Jonas Salk in 1955, who lead the first team to develop and test the inactivated vaccine.

Salk's inactivated vaccine and Sabin's oral vaccine helped save thousands children. The use of the vaccines led to establishment of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, that reduced the worldwide cases of polio by 99%.